The 2021 Kia Sorento Will Make You Think Twice About Buying the 2021 Subaru Forester

Kia recently revealed the all-new redesigned 2021 Kia Sorento family crossover. It’s entering a very competitive space and we think it’s going to prove extremely successful on the market––much like the larger Kia Telluride. But there are other family crossover SUVs that bring it, too. The 2021 Subaru Forester is a practical example of some of the new Sorento’s competition. But which one is better? Sorento vs. Forester?

plush leather captain seats of the all-new 2021 Kia Sorento family crossover
2021 Kia Sorento Interior | Kia

Let’s take a look at the interior and performance of each of these. Will the fresh 2021 Kia Sorento come out on top? Or will the practical 2021 Subaru Forester take the title? Either way, one of the family SUVs is going to appeal on a broader scale than the other.

Sorento vs. Forester: interior

The 2021 Sorento already has an edge on the Forester––depending what you want. The Subaru SUV offers a large back seat. In fact, according to Car and Driver, it’s large enough for adults to sit comfortably. However, if it’s a three-row family crossover you’re looking for, the 2021 Kia SUV prevails. If we are comparing Sorento vs. Forester, one of the first elements in question is the interior. The 2021 Kia Sorento seats more with its standard third-row seating. In fact, the Sorento family crossover also offers the option for captain seats in the second row.

2020 Subaru Forester Touring interior is the most luxurious option to get/
2020 Subaru Forester Touring interior | Subaru

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The 2021 Subaru Forester offers navigation only on the Limited and Touring trims. But this won’t matter much on the lower trim options because both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are stars tech features for the 2021 Forester. The 2021 Sorento offers all of the latest technology as well, with maximum connectivity for the infotainment system. Both the 2021 Kia Sorento and the Subaru Forester offer a nice interior made with quality materials and a range of options.


The all-new 2021 Kia Sorento crossover offers a range of powertrain options––according to Car and Driver. We’ll see a 2.5 liter inline 4-cylinder in the base model that generates up to 191 horsepower. There is also a 281 horsepower turbocharged option. The gas powered options both come mated with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Environmentally conscious hybrid versions will also be available. However, while the gas engines are optional with both two-wheel drive and all-wheel drive, the hybrid powertrain is only available for the two-wheel-drive Sorento––unless you opt for the plug-in hybrid Sorento.

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The 2021 Subaru Forester on the other hand comes only with the option of a 2.5-liter flat 4-cylinder engine. This powerplant gets up to 182 horsepower and it’s paired with a continuously variable automatic transmission. All Forester models come with the AWD system Subarus are known for. According to Car and Driver, it handles well but lacks oomph. Additionally, The Sorento tow up to 3,500 pounds while the Forester is only rated for up to 1,500 pounds.

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Is the Subaru SUV actually more practical than the Kia?

Though the 2021 Subaru Forester is priced just a bit lower than the 2021 Kia Sorento. However, they both feature the highly comparable standard safety. Overall, we think the Kia Sorento is a bit more practical because Kia’s warranty is one of the best in the industry. Plus, it does seem to bring more to the table.